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Raiders fire P.R. director Gilbert

Raiders media relations director Zak Gilbert, fired by the Raiders Saturday, issued the following statement:

“I’d like to thank Mark Davis for the honor of serving the Raiders, and Reggie McKenzie for hiring me. I leave holding my chin up, knowing I dedicated every waking hour to promoting a positive image for our team. The co-workers in my Raiders family are extraordinary; the camaraderie we built was really special. Talking to Raiders fans on a weekly basis, I learned first-hand that their passion and loyalty is unmatched. I have great respect for the team’s rich history and took seriously the role of preserving it. Although disappointed that I can’t remain on the ride, I wish Reggie and Dennis Allen absolutely nothing but success in a bright future.”

Gilbert, hired by general manager Reggie McKenzie, hasn’t been at the club facility since a Sports Illustrated story authored by Jim Trotter which was published April 18 detailed how McKenzie was attempting to put an organization back together after a decade of neglect under Al Davis. Although the story cast McKenzie in a positive light, it was not well received by Mark Davis.

Instead, Gilbert has been working from home and was not attendance at at the NFL draft, the Raiders rookie minicamp or either of the club’s first two organized team activites.

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Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:

    Again, Mark GAVE quotes to Trotter for that piece.

    =========================================================

    And Here’s the honorable Trotter thanking him;

    Jim Trotter ‏@SI_JimTrotter 13h

    Zak Gilbert was a hard-working, conscientious professional. The same cannot be said of the man who fired him. #Raiders

  • marc

    Just to chime in.

    There is nothing wrong with the article. The problem, as I see it, is that a PR guy granted unusual access to a person intent on writing a balanced piece which would disparage Al Davis. As the PR guy, let him write his piece, but don’t grant him access like that unless you can shape the message somewhat.

    If you don’t know that letting a guy in the front door who intends to speak poorly of the much revered Al Davis will put your job in jeopardy, then you don’t belong in the position. Right? I mean, I know that, and I wait tables.

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:
    In an entertainment business like the NFL, PR matters. Where has the Raiders’ incoming $ ranked in the last decade? Near the bottom. That matters when it’s time to put a quality product on the field.
    ======================================================

    Wrong. Al routinely spent more $$’s, vastly outspending other teams in the uncapped year 2010. At or near the top in the last decade.

  • alex7

    but again Marc,

    most of what’s said in that article has been well-documented. And Mark Davis himself gave Trotter other information. And MULTIPLE writers have written about how Mark was dissed time and again by Al.

    None of that stuff is new. Just odd that Davis would be so bent out of shape over that seemingly tepid article when he was part of it.

  • alex7

    Geez Purvisman

    do you really not know that the salary cap is a small FRACTION of the entire income of an NFL team?

    And that the Raiders have been consistently in the bottom-10 in team income?

    You really don’t know these two things?

  • Gdog

    The Florida Pete Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 8:09 am

    SnBG Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 7:53 am
    0ak R8rs Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 6:27 am
    The Florida Pete Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 5:00 am
    I want to talk about the Hayden thing…

    I had double bypass surgery a year and a half ago…

    they cut my sternum to get to the heart… I now have a light colored zipper halfway down my chest…

    it took about 6 months to fully heal…

    for the first few months it hurt like hell to sneeze… I had to cradle a pillow to keep my chest as stable as possible when I did sneeze… it still hurt…

    now I don’t know where the injury to Hayden’s vein is… but if they had to open his chest… splitting his sternum to get to the injury… he’s gonna need more time than just a couple months…
    ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;
    Dr’s say different. I’ll take their opinions and wait and see how Hayden does. My money is on him doing just fine.

    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    well, the Houston doctor did say different and he also said this latest injury is not related to the vena cava repair job…

    well, he would say that since he did the surgery… no way is he gonna say it was his own craftsmanship… lawsuits ya know…

    if it isn’t related then is this something that’s going to be a recurring problem??? because the local doctors haven’t said a word… and they won’t… not without permission from Hayden… I think he tore it again… he was in the hospital for how long???

    I say Hayden retires from football before he plays a regular season snap.

    >>>>>

    Because of a VEIN? How do you tear a vein exactly.. besides a Freak accident. He may sit a few games at most. I doubt he sits anything though. Please.

    This was Reggies tribute to Al… I bet he turns out well!!

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:
    And MULTIPLE writers have written about how Mark was dissed time and again by Al.
    ======================================================

    Besides Silver’s unsubstantiated allegations, whom?

  • alex7

    It literally takes less time to Google “Forbes Raiders team income” than it takes for you to write your incorrect “Wrong!…” sentence.

    …”As a result, they only generated $48 million in stadium revenue last season, which is the lowest in the NFL.”

    http://www.forbes.com/teams/oakland-raiders/

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:

    Geez Purvisman

    do you really not know that the salary cap is a small FRACTION of the entire income of an NFL team?

    And that the Raiders have been consistently in the bottom-10 in team income?

    You really don’t know these two things?
    ===================================================

    You said “That($’s) matters when it’s time to put a quality product on the field.”
    I was talking about players.
    What were you talking about? Slurpees?

    By the way, 120 million dollars is not a small fraction at all. Do you not know that?

  • Gdog

    The Florida Pete Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 5:00 am
    I want to talk about the Hayden thing…

    I had double bypass surgery a year and a half ago…

    they cut my sternum to get to the heart… I now have a light colored zipper halfway down my chest…

    it took about 6 months to fully heal…

    >>>

    Professionals have better technology access and are more motivated to rehab.

    Just so you know. I think Hayden will be a 16 week starter… in the name of AL!

  • DJ Johnny

    Again, why are so many media guys all ticked off about a pr guy from a team that no one really covers much getting fired?

    Without googling can any of you give the name of ANY pr guy with any other NFL franchise?

    Yet the Raiders guy gets fired and you have an SI writer and other well known league analysts dumping on an NFL team owner? Passionate ripping no less?

    Why do these guys care so dam much?

  • alex7

    Umm, if Hayden had re-torn his inferior vena cava, he’d have just gone through the be 95% dead chance again.

    Scar tissue removal is a minor deal compared to what he went through. That happens to almost everyone that has a major surgery.

  • jesusraiderjim

    Purvisman

    Here is the LLama link if you have not seen it yet.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2334778/Escaped-llama-tasered-cops-spat-trampled-officer.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

    I imagine Llamas are probably smarter than cops.

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:

    It literally takes less time to Google “Forbes Raiders team income” than it takes for you to write your incorrect “Wrong!…” sentence.

    …”As a result, they only generated $48 million in stadium revenue last season, which is the lowest in the NFL.”
    ==================================================

    Your morphing your original contention into something else entirely. And now I remember you. Been silent for a while. Shouldn’t have bothered engaging to begin with.

  • marc

    Alex7

    I agree that it is well documented, and I actually agree with what was written… but why grant the guy extra access without controlling the message? Tell the guy, hey you can write your article from the outside and that is fine, but you can have full access to the GM and HC and Owner if you play down the mismanagement of recent years and play up the present management.

    If the writer agrees great, and if he doesn’t deny him access. Seems like common sense to me, and PR 101. The fact that this guy thought it would be okay to grant a reporter access and give him license to write whatever he wants about the present owner’s dead father is ludicrous. And that is why he was fired and rightfully so. His job is to get the owner/management’s message out to the public in the most positive way he can. Al dragging the raiders down for the last 10 years is not Mark Davis’ message… And if you don’t know that, you have no business working in football, let alone for the Raiders.

  • alex7

    DJ

    I can take a stab at your answer.

    1) No other team has garnered as much odd PR coverage as ours the last decade. Herrera was ridiculous, Davis was over-the-top a few times, the Kiffin debacle was a PR nightmare…

    the Raiders PR has been almost covered more than the actual team, being how bad we’ve been.

  • Gdog

    Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:14 pm

    alex7 Says:

    Geez Purvisman

    do you really not know that the salary cap is a small FRACTION of the entire income of an NFL team?

    And that the Raiders have been consistently in the bottom-10 in team income?

    You really don’t know these two things?
    ===================================================

    You said “That($’s) matters when it’s time to put a quality product on the field.”
    I was talking about players.
    What were you talking about? Slurpees?

    By the way, 120 million dollars is not a small fraction at all. Do you not know that?

    >>>

    I’m pretty sure I read that the split TV revenues outpace the salary caps of all teams.

    Its almost impossible to lose money in the NFL.

    non sequetor..

  • alex7

    2) The firing seems to be based on a truthful analysis of the Raiders, and that is the FIRST move that Mark has made that reminds the media of his father’s sensitive and relatively itchy trigger.

    That’s a bit news-worthy in this dead NFL time.

    3) AND VERY IMPORTANTLY, the Raiders had been getting POSITIVE press recently! Many articles written about McKenzie’s great work, one journalist hailing Allen getting 4 wins out of that terrible roster as a major achievement, positive articles about our draft…

    then poof, the PR guy gets axed. Right as it seems things are turning around overall. Odd.

  • Gdog

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    Umm, if Hayden had re-torn his inferior vena cava, he’d have just gone through the be 95% dead chance again.

    Scar tissue removal is a minor deal compared to what he went through. That happens to almost everyone that has a major surgery.

    >>>

    Agreed. he will be 100% by training camp.

  • DJ Johnny

    What else can we deduce by this media outrage at the firing of a low level org employee except that Gilbert was a “source” of inside info for them? And an important one as evidenced by their outrage and need to express themselves with such disdain for the man that fired him.

  • alex7

    Gdog, Purv

    Despite revenue-sharing from media money, the Raiders are still FAR behind other teams in overall profit, meaning we don’t have $ for a freaking GROUNDSKEEPER or a legit jumbo screen, our facilities are NOT top-notch, our reputation is down, we have a terrible stadium, empty seats galore, bad PR…

    to say these things DON’T at all matter to free agents’ choices is naive.

  • alex7

    DJ

    you COULD deduce the more simple and obvious answer. Raiders PR was on an upswing for once…
    and the guy gets canned.

    What “inside info” has been leaked out? EVERYONE knew what was in that article (terrible cap management, Reggie cleaned it up, terrible FA and draft picks by Al, quotes from Mark…)

    The only “leak” was our draft pick, and it came a few hours before the pick, nothing strange with that. And our PR guy had been frozen out MONTHS before that.

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    jesusraiderjim, yes, thanx, I saw it. Looked like a well cared for llama in the picture. I’m curious about the owner calling the cops. What’d he think they were going to do?
    As I said earlier, Scooter’s probably lucky he got tased, and not shot. If Scooter had any friends, preferably a llama, but a horse, goats, sheep, dog, whatever he’d of wandered back home soon enough. They don’t get lost, and as green as that area was, might not have been much palatable to him.
    Kinda like the name ‘Scooter’.

  • alex7

    From a medical website: “For example, if you hurt yourself 6 months ago, and just started scar tissue removal or other forms of therapy, you can estimate it will take you 6 months from your first treatment to get back to peak performance if you’re working everyday.”

    The healing is a little quicker for a world-class athlete. If DJ is fully-healthy 3 weeks into the season, you’re looking at 4.9 years of a quality pick, instead of 5 years. Yawn.

  • Gdog

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    Gdog, Purv

    Despite revenue-sharing from media money, the Raiders are still FAR behind other teams in overall profit, meaning we don’t have $ for a freaking GROUNDSKEEPER or a legit jumbo screen, our facilities are NOT top-notch, our reputation is down, we have a terrible stadium, empty seats galore, bad PR…

    to say these things DON’T at all matter to free agents’ choices is naive.

    >>>>

    Point well made. I am sick of seeing us playing on the worst field in the NFL.

    Reggie needs to put a winning team on the field to bring the revenues up.

    He seems to be doing the opposite, IMO. He seems to be hoping bottom feeding will bring championships.

    Never been done.

    But I will wait another year for him to prove me wrong.

    He will have 70 mill in cap space to dazzle me next season…

  • alex7

    from the SI article:

    “(Al Davis) was the only owner who didn’t use one of the national scouting services for college prospects, and the only one who didn’t subscribe to the psychological-testing program available to each team before the draft.”

    No club draft room or college-prospect questionnaire existed either. Not exatly INSIDE LEAKED info. ANYONE that had worked with the team the last 10 years would know this.

  • Purvisman/Intrepid/Eternal Optimist

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    Umm, if Hayden had re-torn his inferior vena cava, he’d have just gone through the be 95% dead chance again.

    Scar tissue removal is a minor deal compared to what he went through. That happens to almost everyone that has a major surgery.

    >>>
    Gdog Says:
    Agreed. he will be 100% by training camp.
    ===================================================

    Alex, I’ll disengage with complete agreement on this also. Gave up explaining it to those that expect the most unlikely scenario to play out, if they even understand how the vein was repaired and why the adhesions were not unexpected at all.

  • alex7

    Good points Gdog.

    I will say, though, that I rarely see a team that makes splashy free agent signings (outside of QB) have it translate to wins.

    Buffalo and Mario Williams.
    Redkins and Deion Sanders/Bruce Williams.
    Raiders and Walker/D.Hall/Sapp.

    Consistently Super Bowl teams are made up of draft picks and solid non-flashy veterans.

  • marc

    Zak Gilbert: He what are you going to write about?

    Reporter: How Al Davis drove the franchise into the ground for over a decade and how Reggie McKenzie is turning it around.

    Zak Gilbert: Great story, and accurate, but I can’t help you write it.

    Boom! Zak Gilbert still has a job.

  • Flash Raider

    It’s all starting to get clear. Reggie hires another Green Bay guy, Zak Gilbert (what is with all this GB crap). Anyway, Reggie hires him out of spite, but knowing he is a PR guy, hires him anyways. Reggie is gonna diss him by giving him a DA turd to polish. But Gilbert is a little more savvy and knows what Reggie is up to. Gilbert goes deep throat, and knows all to well he cant polish Reggie and DA’s turds. So out of spite again, Reggie fires hime. And Gilbert says you can suck it to Reggie and DA as he walks out the door. Just dick heads playin games. What a bunch of bull sh*t.

  • Flash Raider

    Reggie and Gilbert probably butted heads in Green Bay. It is all starting to take shape now. Effin cat and mouse game between those two.

  • Flash Raider

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:20 pm
    2) The firing seems to be based on a truthful analysis of the Raiders, and that is the FIRST move that Mark has made that reminds the media of his father’s sensitive and relatively itchy trigger.

    That’s a bit news-worthy in this dead NFL time.

    3) AND VERY IMPORTANTLY, the Raiders had been getting POSITIVE press recently! Many articles written about McKenzie’s great work, one journalist hailing Allen getting 4 wins out of that terrible roster as a major achievement, positive articles about our draft…

    then poof, the PR guy gets axed. Right as it seems things are turning around overall. Odd.
    —-

    Odd indeed.

  • Gdog

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    from the SI article:

    “(Al Davis) was the only owner who didn’t use one of the national scouting services for college prospects, and the only one who didn’t subscribe to the psychological-testing program available to each team before the draft.”

    No club draft room or college-prospect questionnaire existed either. Not exatly INSIDE LEAKED info. ANYONE that had worked with the team the last 10 years would know this.

    >>>

    Cork said this was all BS.

  • Flash Raider

    wonder if reggie and gilbert were havin words before the sh*t hit the fan. wonder if those two argued at HQ, and if all the suits could hear them fighting.

  • Flash Raider

    DJ Johnny Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:21 pm
    What else can we deduce by this media outrage at the firing of a low level org employee except that Gilbert was a “source” of inside info for them? And an important one as evidenced by their outrage and need to express themselves with such disdain for the man that fired him.
    —-

    Reggie and Gilbert had issues between them at Green Bay, and Reggie wanted to bring him here to continue b1tch slapping him around. But Gilbert went mole and effed Reggie up.

  • new improved dr robert now cherry flavored

    I’m pretty sure that before this post, if I woulda asked any of u who zak Gilbert was, u would have guessed he was a qb we were looking at outta Toronto State.

    Can we go back to discussing Van Gogh?

    How about the theory that the Mona Lisa is actually a Davinci self portrait in drag?

    I mean c’mon. The PR guy?

  • Gdog

    alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Good points Gdog.

    I will say, though, that I rarely see a team that makes splashy free agent signings (outside of QB) have it translate to wins.

    Buffalo and Mario Williams.
    Redkins and Deion Sanders/Bruce Williams.
    Raiders and Walker/D.Hall/Sapp.

    Consistently Super Bowl teams are made up of draft picks and solid non-flashy veterans.

    >>>

    He needs to simply keep our solid core players that might be offered over the market contracts… (Veldheer, Houston) and bring in two or three blue chip veterans to mold this team into something more than a herd of players desperate for more playing time.

    I am skeptical.. although bringing in CWood for seemingly no reason at all gives me hope.

  • Flash Raider

    Maybe Reggie once called him Gilbert Grape, then Gilbert had 24 big macs delivered to Reggies office. Who knows?

  • 0ak r8rs

    Alex7 Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 8:20 pm
    If you don’t think that a team’s PR at least SOMEWHAT impacts how much a free agent wants to sign here…

    you’re limited in your thinking.

    Yes, $ talks, but look at CWood. Visited teams with better reps first, visited Oakland (then was scheduled for Detroit) afterwards.

    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    Well by that example I guess we r good then. Since Woodson signed 2 weeks ago when our PR director was apparently on exile.

  • 0ak r8rs

    This was Reggies tribute to Al… I bet he turns out well!!

    @@@@@@@@@@@@

    If that’s the case, then Hayden will be a bust, just like every other AD pick from the last decade. Great.

  • 0ak r8rs

    New Improved Dr Robert Now Cherry Flavored Says:
    June 2nd, 2013 at 9:51 pm
    I’m pretty sure that before this post, if I woulda asked any of u who zak Gilbert was, u would have guessed he was a qb we were looking at outta Toronto State.

    Can we go back to discussing Van Gogh?

    How about the theory that the Mona Lisa is actually a Davinci self portrait in drag?

    I mean c’mon. The PR guy?

    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    A point I tried to make ALL day. Unsuccessfully.